Channeling the Populist Rage
Of course, while we have a high view of government, it isn't a blank check. Christian doctrines such as sphere sovereignty, subsidiarity (nothing should be done by a larger, complex organization when a smaller organization can accomplish it), the balance of power, and God's transcendent law must hold government in check. So if Washington has lost touch with the people, as Christians we should work fervently to reform these systems. Real reform may even have to come through an independent commission like Securing America's Future Economy (SAFE), for which Congressman Frank Wolf has tirelessly advocated.
The tea party movement may have a lot of traction in America today, but it makes no attempt to present a governing philosophy. It simply seeks an outlet—an understandable one—for the brooding frustrations of many Americans. But anti-government attitudes are not the substitute for good government.We should be instructing people enraged at the excesses of Washington and the growing ethical malaise in the Capitol to focus their rage at fixing government, not throwing the baby out with the bath water.
We Christians are to be the best citizens, praying for our leaders and holding them in high regard, even as we push for the reforms desperately needed to keep representative government flourishing. Only when we funnel frustrations into constructive reformation can we expect a government that is truly of the people, by the people, and for the people.
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Previous columns by Charles Colson are available on our website, including:
Valentine's Dynamic Love | Our love is most godly when it is against the world for the world. (February 12, 2010)
The Problem of Goodness | It's not just the problem of evil that baffles the secularist. (December 22, 2009)
When Atheists Believe | The confounding attraction of the Christian worldview. (October 22, 2009)
Christianity Today follows political developments on the politics blog.
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